Saturday, March 19, 2016

Day one... 1st filgrastim shots

We officially started today.

I was supposed to drive up and check into the hotel Friday night, but instead I decided to drive up this morning so I could have dinner with the hubby one last time before spending 5 days apart.  This meant I was up at 5:30 this morning to drive to Stanford in time for my 10 am appointment. To say that I'm not a morning person is putting it mildly, so this morning was a little tough. :)

I made it to my appointment right on time. I've been here so many times that I know exactly where I'm going, where to park, etc; it's crazy how removing "the unknown" eliminates a huge amount of anxiety. I was definitely more relaxed than my 1st time around.

The appointment started by taking my vitals and weight. Weight is pretty important since that's how they determine how much filgrastim they need to inject you with. After that, they drew just one vial of blood to check my complete blood count which will be checked again right before I donate. I also had to answer a list of questions about where I'm feeling pain. These questions get asked every day to monitor changes in how you feel.

While we we checking vitals and drawing blood the filgrastim was coming to room temperature. Surprisingly important... If they don't let it warm up before injecting it's significantly more stingy. I was given 2 injections, both on the back of my left arm. We use a different spot every day. I have a tendency to bruise a little a the injection sites so I'll have a delightful collection of tiny bruises by the end of the week. Also important, the nurse needs to push it really slow this will also help minimize owies. Honestly I feel like the shots hurt less than last time. Well see if my opinion changes in a few days.

The first time they give you filgrastim, you have to sit around for 30 minutes afterwards to make sure you don't have an allergic reaction. It felt silly considering I've done this before, but Be The Match is super strict about it. Of course I had no issues and I was released back into the world until my next injection tomorrow morning.

I spent the rest of the day napping and watching terrible television. We don't have cable at home so this is surprisingly amusing to me. I started taking daily Claritin, which is something I did not do last time, but was recommended by the doctor to help with the bone pain. I'm also taking Tylenol on a regular 6 hour rotation. Keeping up on the meds helps keep the pain in check. My injection site was red and a little itchy for the first 4 hours but that subsided.

It's been 12 hours since the shots. I'm feeling mild overall achey-ness. But there is distinctly stronger in my sternum and my feet (that didn't happen last time). As I write this I'm also noticing the back of my pelvis as well. Experience tells me this means it's probably going to be more than achey in those spots tomorrow.

Going to bed now... Super tired, but I suspect that this has more to do with waking up early than the filgrastim.

Sunday, March 13, 2016

Bringing a blog back to life...

Well hello there...

Long time no post...

I'm not so good at this blog thing, but I'm reinstating this bad boy for science! :)

I'm going to be donating peripheral blood stem cells (PBSC) to a patient in need of a bone marrow transplant for the 2nd time and since I've gotten so many questions about the process I've decided to document it this time around.

I'll be posting here as well as on Instagram @MsJoannaBananas

If you have specific questions, let me know and I'll answer them to the best of my ability.

- Joanna

Monday, March 4, 2013

Armed and probably not at all dangerous

I have some cool ass friends who fully support my bizarre new habit of setting asinine goals for myself, publicly posting said goals, and then demanding they read the gibberish that I have posted.

On Saturday, we had lunch to celebrate my rapid decline towards AARP membership (AKA my 29th birthday) and 2 of my ladies... Melyssa (who shall be known as Weasel in all future posts) and Melissa gave me an awesome necklace AND a shooting lesson at one of the ranges in town. How bad ass is that?! Adventure #1 is damn near in the bag my friends.

Fitzgerald rather unwillingly modeled the necklace for me. Because I wasn't digging the Myspace style in the mirror shots... reluctant Pomeranian seemed to be the next best option.

 photo Fitzwearinggunnecklacewithdetail_zpsb7ae8d84.jpg

Also, super exciting is that these two lovely ladies are going accompany me on Adventure #1. Which multiplies the hilarity exponentially by 78, which let me tell you... is a lot of ridiculousness.

There will be pictures, and maybe some video, and probably a lot of those paper men that you shoot holes in... they actually do that right? It's not just a movie thing? I have no idea...

Locked and loaded,

Saturday, March 2, 2013

Woody Allen is a pervo

I am 1/12th of 1/30th of the way done with THE list! I’m not even going to attempt the “math” required to actually give you a single fraction… But hell… progress is progress, is it not?

Adventure #10: Watch 12 movies (one per month) from Roger Ebert’s list of Greatest Movies.
Rules for Adventure #10 – Movies I have seen before do not count, Schindler’s List must  be one of the 12 movies.

I have discovered that many of the movies on Mr. Ebert's list are not available to stream from Hulu Plus or Netflix. I may have to get the actual DVDs. How very 2009.

So last night I ended up watching Manhattan. Directed by Woody Allen, staring Woody Allen, Mariel Hemingway (Ernest’s granddaughter), Diane Keaton, and Meryl Streep. It was nominated for 2 Academy Awards in 1980.

Best line:

“Hey, I’m honest. What do you want? I say what’s on my mind and if you can’t take it, well then fuck off.” – Mary (played by Diane Keaton) Love her!

The whole movie was full of shots of 1970s era Manhattan which made me realize how much I wanted to visit again. I went on a super awesome trip in 2007 (oddly all my photographic evidence of said trip involves a horse named George and men dressed as toy soldiers) and have wanted to go back ever since (although not specifically because of men dressed as toy soldiers and George the horse).

Me and a horse named George. Seriously I didn't make that up.
Me and some cute little guys outside of FAO Shwartz in NYC

Bottom line… I’m a little weirded out by Woody Allen’s movie about a 42 year old man dating a 17 year old girl. Probably made worse by the fact that in real life he ended up marrying his baby mama's daughter, making him his son's father AND brother-in-law. It's all a little too backwoods Arkansas for me.

Despite the icky old man/teenager sexy time, I give Manhattan 6.5/10* since I dig Diane Keaton and Meryl Streep and Manhattan. 

*Please note... I am not a film critic... I really don't know shit about cinema. So if Woody Allen films get you all excited, don't get your panties all in a knot that I didn't seriously dig this one. I'm sure there are some super important themes and blah blah blah... but I don't give a rat's ass about that stuff... if you creep me out by having sex with your kind of step daughter... I'm probably going to judge the movie you made 12 years before about screwing around with Ernest Hemingway's granddaughter. That is all. 


Wednesday, February 27, 2013

In the beginning there was a birthday and a list...

Today I turn 29... holy. shit.

Feels a little like this...

Now before you start that "Ohmygosh you're still so young!"... "Wait till you hit 50!"... "Girl you've got a whole lot of life before you!" pep talk, let me just say... I am fully aware that being less than a year away from 30 is in no way, shape, or form a tragedy nor does it make me eligible for assisted living or adult diapers. Quite the opposite. And I have, in fact, very much relished in the celebration of the anniversary of my birth or as I oddly refer to it sometimes, Uterine Emancipation Day. I look around at all the freakin' fabulous people in my life and think GODDAMN I'M LUCKY! Seriously.

In the spirit of keeping things interesting. I have concocted a list of 30 tasks adventures that I endeavor to have between now and my next birthday. Remarkably... start a blog is not on the list... but it appears that it will be a side effect of the list nonetheless.

Without further ado... Joanna's 30 before 30 list: 
  1. Shoot a gun
  2. Finish a quilt 
  3. Have a dinner party and use my wedding china
  4. Get glasses
  5. Sew something I can wear, that is not a costume, start to finish
  6. Finish Rosetta Stone Spanish
  7. Take ballroom dance classes with Jason
  8. Paint/Revamp a piece of furniture
  9. Read at least two books off of the Time "10 Greatest Books of All Time" list
  10. Watch 12 movies from Roger Ebert's list of Greatest Movies: The First 100
  11. Learn how to use power tools
  12. Volunteer for 30 hours
  13. Learn to play one song on my guitar
  14. Add 30 new albums to my vinyl collection
  15. Ride a horse
  16. Frame and hang 10 new photos
  17. Go see a musical
  18. Decide on a new go-to cocktail and master the making of it
  19. Take the train to Hanford and get ice cream at Superior Dairy
  20. Change my last name on EVERYTHING (drivers license, passport, social security card, pay check, bank accounts, etc. etc. etc.
  21. Try one new recipe a month
  22. Feed a giraffe
  23. Donate blood
  24. Mail a secret to Post Secret
  25. Take a self-defense course
  26. Get my wedding dress cleaned and properly stored
  27. Sleep under the stars (no tent) for one night
  28. Learn to BBQ
  29. Buy an original piece of art and hang it in the house
  30. Become a REAL baseball fan, completely understand the game and know the history.
So yes... that is my first blog post... you all have one... I read it... now you can read mine... or not... feel free to mock me endlessly in the comments... and I assure you there will be photos of me making a total ass out of myself to follow.